Cathedrals embrace Islam, celebrate Ramadan
With congregations dwindling and churches closing at an alarming rate (many converted to luxury flats, bars, even mosques) you'd think senior clergy would be working flat out to make new Christian converts and especially to educate young people in Christianity.
But no, there are more important things to do - like promoting Islam.
Since the start of Ramadan on May 5th, numerous virtue-signalling bishops and church leaders have given their energies to hosting and promoting 'inter-faith' Ramadan services and Iftar events.
Iftar, in case you didn't know, is the evening meal Muslims take at sunset after each day of Ramadan fasting.
The meal is strictly halal, which is to say that all meat consumed during even church-hosted events comes from animals sacrificed to Allah, the Islamic deity.
(Incidentally, have you noticed how little reciprocation there is in 'inter-faith' initiatives? It always seems to be Christians accommodating other religions, rarely vice versa.)
London Mayor Sadiq Khan kicked things off with a Ramadan event at St Paul's Cathedral, followed by an Iftar meal at nearby Guildhall.
Like many of his co-religionists, Mayor Khan seems thrilled that such bastions of European Christianity are ready to embrace Islamic observances.
I want to pay huge tribute to the Bishop of London and everyone at St Paul's Cathedral for opening up this really special cathedral and spiritual home of many Londoners.
Unfortunately, as you'll see from the photos/ captions below, it isn't just a London phenomenon.
On May 17th Peterborough Cathedral hosted the '2nd Annual Inter-Faith Ramadan Iftar', billed as 'an evening... in the spirit of Ramadan.'
Last year, Southwark Cathedral decided that a 'Grand Iftar Service' would be the best way to commemorate the anniversary of the Borough Market/ London Bridge Islamist attacks, which happened only yards away.
Ramadan at Newcastle Cathedral.
Iftar at Coventry Cathedral.
This year's 'Ramadan Dhimmi' prize must surely go to Reverend Lissa Scott of St Matthew and St Luke's in Darlington, who not only invited Muslims into her church to do Ramadan prayers, but also (presumably so as not to 'offend' them) offered to cover up crosses and a painting of Jesus.
These were some of the written instructions for the event:
One aisle in church to be cleared of chairs for Muslim men to say prayers. Cover Christian crosses/ photographs in small rooms for ladies to say prayers.
Mercifully, the event was relocated to another building.
Whilst educational exchanges between people of different beliefs can, in principle, be useful and constructive, the fact is that even low-level participation in religious practices can be a first step to conversion.
Muslim religious leaders understand this well enough, and some will use opportunities provided by 'inter-faith' dupes to involve non-Muslims - especially youngsters - in their rituals.
And that is why Islamic prayers, practices and observances MUST be kept out of Christian churches and cathedrals.
Sadly, many church leaders seem too weak, naive or confused to resist.
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